The Dire Wolf, also known as the fearsome dog, is an extinct species and is perhaps one of the most famous prehistoric carnivores in North America. Its long, sharp fangs and huge body that is considerably larger than a gray wolf make it a unique animal - one that you would not want to mess with! Although the dire wolf is believed to be extinct for almost 10,000 years, when a trucker driving on Highway 61 hit and killed a large-bodied wolf years ago, he couldn't help but make a call to the DNR to have them check it out.
When the DNR arrived, they found the wolf to be so massive that they called in State Park personnel and naturalists of Gooseberry Falls State Park to take a look. Because the wolf's size and location (it was found where dire wolves used to roam), they requested that it be mounted in the new interpretative center for all to see. In fact, the wolf was so big that even the taxidermist could not find a mock body to fit what they had discovered. He eventually found an Alaskan wolf body, one of the largest in the world to fit the body.
Today, you can find the wolf displayed at Gooseberry Falls State Park in their interpretative center. Although it's behind glass, the beautiful creature still gives people a little scare when they realize how enormous the wolves can grow to be.